Mark Evanier

Mark Evanier

Evanier at Anthrocon 2007
Born Mark Stephen Evanier
(1952-03-02) March 2, 1952
Santa Monica, California, U.S.
Occupation Author, screenwriter, biographer, historian and voice director
Nationality American
Genre comic books, television sitcoms, cartoons, biographical books
Notable works Blackhawk
The DNAgents
Garfield and Friends
Kirby: King of Comics
The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show
Richie Rich
The Garfield Show
Years active 1969–present

Mark Stephen Evanier (/ɛvənɪər/; born March 2, 1952)[1] is an American comic book and television writer, particularly known for his work on the animated TV series Garfield and Friends and on the comic book Groo the Wanderer.[2] He is also known for his columns and blogs, and for his work as a historian and biographer of the comics industry, in particular his award-winning Jack Kirby biography, Kirby: King of Comics.[3]

Early life

Evanier identifies as Jewish. His father was Jewish and his mother was Catholic.[4][5] He chose to be a writer after witnessing the misery his father felt from working for the Internal Revenue Service and contrasting that with the portrayal of a writer's life on The Dick Van Dyke Show. He graduated from University High School in 1969.


Evanier was president of a Los Angeles comic book club from 1966-69.[6] In 1967, he suggested the titles of the officers of the Merry Marvel Marching Society.[7] He made his first professional sale in 1969.[8] The same year, through a mutual association with a Marvel Comics mail-order firm, he was taken on as a production assistant to Jack Kirby.[6] Several years later Evanier began writing foreign comic books for the Walt Disney Studio Program, then from 1972 to 1976 wrote scripts for Gold Key Comics, including one memorable story, "The Greatest of E's" where he revealed that the E in Wile E. Coyote stands for "Ethelbert," along with comics for the Edgar Rice Burroughs estate.[9]

In 1974 he teamed with writer Dennis Palumbo and wrote for a number of television series, including The Nancy Walker Show, The McLean Stevenson Show, and Welcome Back, Kotter.

Evanier speaking on a panel about Jack Kirby with (from left to right) Roy Thomas, Joe Sinnott and Stan Goldberg, at the Big Apple Con in Manhattan, November 15, 2008.

After the cancellation of Kotter in 1979, on which he was one of the story editors, Evanier and Palumbo amicably ended their partnership. He subsequently wrote for the Hanna-Barbera comic book division and a number of variety shows and specials, and he began writing for animated cartoon shows, including Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo, The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show, Thundarr the Barbarian, The ABC Weekend Special, Richie Rich, The Wuzzles, and Dungeons & Dragons. But he is most noted in animation for his work on Garfield and Friends, a seven-season series for which Evanier wrote or co-wrote nearly every episode and acted as voice recording director.[10] Since 2008, Evanier has been the co-writer and voice director of The Garfield Show, which went on to win a Daytime Emmy Award for June Foray.

Evanier credits himself with convincing Jack Kirby to stop using Vince Colletta as an inker, and considers himself one of the "main vilifiers" of Colletta.[11]

He wrote a script and provided "'technical advice' about comic books" for Bob, Bob Newhart's unsuccessful third sitcom for CBS.[12]

He has produced a number of comic books, including Blackhawk, Crossfire and Hollywood Superstars (with Dan Spiegle),[9] Groo the Wanderer (with Sergio Aragonés),[13] and The DNAgents (with Will Meugniot). For the Spiegle comics, Evanier contributed lengthy essays on the entertainment industry. In 1985, he launched the DC Challenge limited series with artist Gene Colan.[14] He wrote the New Gods series of 1989-1991. Evanier collaborated with Joe Staton on the Superman & Bugs Bunny mini-series in 2000.[15]

For many years, Evanier wrote a regular column, "Point of View", for Comics Buyer's Guide.

Evanier's illustrated Jack Kirby biography, Kirby: King of Comics, was published in February 2008 by Abrams Books.[16] It won the 2009 Eisner Award for Best Comics-Related Book.[3]

Personal life

On May 26, 2006, Evanier checked into Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and underwent gastric bypass surgery. Having peaked at around 344 pounds (156 kg) by then, he subsequently lost nearly 99 pounds (45 kg) by June 2007.[17]

Mark Evanier at the 2005 Reuben Awards.



Boom! Studios

Comico Comics

Dark Horse Comics

DC Comics

Eclipse Comics

IDW Publishing

Marvel Comics

Epic Comics

Pacific Comics




  1. Miller, John Jackson (June 10, 2005). "Comics Industry Birthdays". Comics Buyer's Guide. Iola, Wisconsin. Archived from the original on October 29, 2010.
  2. Johnston, Rich (March 9, 2011). "The Mark Evanier Deposition For The Kirby Family Vs Marvel Lawsuit". Bleeding Cool. Archived from the original on July 31, 2013.
  3. 1 2 "Wondercon Special Guests". Comic-Con Magazine. San Diego Comic-Con International: 19. Winter 2010.
  4. Evanier, Mark (November 19, 2013). "Tales of My Childhood #6". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 17, 2014.
  5. Evanier, Mark (December 7, 2011). "About ME". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 23, 2014. 'Evanier' is not French; it was probably made up by some Immigration Officer at Ellis Island one day who said, 'Hey, here come some more Jews! Let's give them real stupid last names!
  6. 1 2 Kraft, David Anthony; Slifer, Roger (April 1983). "Mark Evanier". Comics Interview (2). Fictioneer Books. pp. 23–34.
  7. DeFalco, Tom; Gilbert, Laura, ed. (2008). "1960s". Marvel Chronicle A Year by Year History. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 120. ISBN 978-0756641238. Mark Evanier...wrote [to Marvel Comics] suggesting that the M.M.M.S have officers: anyone who bought a Marvel comic was entitled to the rank of RFO (Real Frantic One) and a published letter elevated him or her to QNS (Quite 'Nuff Sayer) status.
  8. Evanier, Mark (June 19, 2013). "Tales of My Father #3". News From ME. Archived from the original on June 29, 2013.
  9. 1 2 Mark Evanier at the Grand Comics Database
  10. Evanier, Mark (November 23, 2013). "Garfield and Friends Episode Guide". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 24, 2014.
  11. Evanier, Mark (May 5, 2007). "About Vince Colletta". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 24, 2014. I don't think I've ever gotten through a major comic convention without someone coming up to me and bestowing thanks for my role in getting Jack Kirby to dump Colletta as his inker around 1971. It could easily be my greatest contribution to the world of comics.
  12. Evanier, Mark (December 1, 2007). "Briefly Noted…". New From ME. Archived from the original on May 24, 2014. The show was created, produced and largely written by Bill Steinkellner, Cheri Steinkellner and Phoef Sutton. I merely wrote one episode and, in an unofficial capacity, provided some "technical advice" about comic books and the comic book business.
  13. DeFalco "1980s" in Gilbert (2008), p. 220: "Marvel's Epic Comics imprint also launched their longest running and most successful title, Groo the Wanderer. It was drawn by Sergio Aragonés...and was written by Mark Evanier."
  14. Manning, Matthew K.; Dolan, Hannah, ed. (2010). "1980s". DC Comics Year By Year A Visual Chronicle. London, United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. p. 215. ISBN 978-0-7566-6742-9. A mad experiment, DC Challenge was a fun adventure, starring many DC icons. Its debut issue was penned by Mark Evanier and drawn by Gene Colan.
  15. Cowsill, Alan "2000s" in Dolan, p. 296: "Writer Mark Evanier and artist Joe Staton produced a cool and wacky adventure that featured many of DC's greatest heroes and their cartoon counterparts."
  16. Evanier, Mark (September 15, 2007). "Where I'll Be". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 24, 2014.
  17. Evanier, Mark (May 26, 2007). "A Sense of Loss". News From ME. Archived from the original on May 24, 2014. My highest-ever weight was around 365...The lowest I've hit on my scale has been 245, just one maddening pound shy of an even hundred since the operation.
  18. "1992 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on November 8, 2013.
  19. "1997 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on April 28, 2014.
  20. "1999 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award Nominees and Winners". Hahn Library Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on April 28, 2014.
  21. "The Bob Clampett Humanitarian Award". San Diego Comicon International. 2014. Archived from the original on March 29, 2014.
  22. "2000s Eisner Awards Recipients". San Diego Comicon International. 2013. Archived from the original on August 23, 2013. Retrieved October 25, 2013.
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